From newcomers to Notion favourites, delve into the eight best debut albums of 2022.

'I Love You Jennifer B' by Jockstrap

Jockstrap’s music has always felt refreshingly experimental, and Georgia Ellery and Taylor Skye's full-length debut pushes their artistry to new heights. Rattling seamlessly between strings, synths and electronic sounds, the album encompasses a web of eclectic influences tied together with intricate production. Whether they’re enlisting an entire orchestra or magnifying Georgia’s solo airy vocals, each corner of 'I Love You Jennifer B' evokes a different spectrum of emotion. But the record's most potent magic lies in its paradoxes — theatrical and refined, playful and serious, accessible and bizarre — making it one that's impossible to get bored of.

'Nymph' by Shygirl

Like so many of music history's most beguiling artists, Shygirl dances the line between relatable and untouchable. She's disarmingly direct, speaking her mind and desires like she's reading our own. But she also embodies a fantasy — nymph, movie star, name in lights, all eyes on me. Her much-anticipated debut album amplifies both sides. From tracks to lose yourself in on the dance floor to tracks that make you feel more yourself than ever, 'Nymph' takes us on a ride through each of Shygirl's dimensions and there's power to be found in all of them.

'Yesterday Is Heavy' by Lil Silva

Lil Silva's been working towards his debut album for over a decade — a considered approach you can hear throughout July’s 'Yesterday Is Heavy'. Calling on a handful of artists including Charlotte Day Wilson, Ghetts, BADBADNOTGOOD and longtime collaborator Sampha, Silva pulls the project together with an energy that feels consistently his own. Having worked with the likes of Mark Ronson and Adele and spent years developing his own writing and production, ‘Yesterday Is Heavy’ feels like the artist’s most refined and timeless work yet.

'Wet Leg' by Wet Leg

After their wildly successful debut single "Chaise Longue" last year, the pressure was on for Wet Leg to grow beyond the initial buzz of the song. With self-titled 'Wet Leg', they delivered. Across 12 tracks, the album both cemented their signature sound and gave it dimension. Crowned Best Independent Breakthrough act at the AIM Independent Music Awards a few months ago and picking up five GRAMMY nominations since then, the accolades speak for themselves.

'Reason to Smile' by Kojey Radical

Having established himself as one of the UK's most experimental and authentic artists since his first official project, 'Dear Daisy: Opium' in 2014, Kojey Radical's debut album has been a long time coming. Over 15 tracks, ‘Reason to Smile’ is a lesson in storytelling and Kojey’s tools are vast: from his lyrics and delivery to the patchwork of sounds he weaves together. With a long list of features (from Wretch 32 & Shakka on “Beautiful”, to Knucks on “Payback” and Kelis & Tiana Major9 on “Talkin”), the project feels cohesive without sacrificing Kojey’s range, rich references and collaborative approach.

'Gifted' by Koffee

Since picking up a GRAMMY for her 2019 debut EP 'Rapture' — making history (aged 19) as the first woman to take home the Best Reggae Album award — Koffee fans have been patiently waiting for her first LP. Over 10 tracks, 'Gifted' demonstrates her versatility as an artist whilst staying true to her roots and everything that fuelled her prodigious rise. Uncovering more layers of her capabilities as both a musician and songwriter, there's moments for joy and exuberance, moments for reflection and sociopolitical critique, and always a moment for hope.

'HYPNOS' by Ravyn Lenae

With silky vocals layered over effortlessly polished production, Ravyn Lenae's 'HYPNOS' feels like a lazy Sunday afternoon — an album that takes up space, and makes you feel at home in yours. Building on the sound she set out with her latest EP, 2018’s Steve Lacy-produced ‘Crush’, ‘HYPNOS’ sees Ravyn bask in self-assurance, cementing her status as one of this generation’s most exciting artists reimagining R&B.

'Ivory' by Omar Apollo

Stripped-back and celestial, 45-second title track "Ivory" opens Omar Apollo's debut album with a moment of calm — a sonic reset before taking us on a tour of his vast musical universe. Leaning into different genres and at times singing in Spanish, the record feels like a clear marker of growth for Omar, rooted in his previous work but letting his artistry run free. Pulling us into reflective and nostalgic moments with intensity, it offers relief in shared vulnerability, a space for connection with both the artist and ourselves.

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